Farm Safety Check: Hay and Silage Harvest

Farm Safety Check: Hay and Silage Harvest


Warm weather means hay and silage season for many farms. Moving parts, dusts, long days, and roadway hazards are a few of the ways haying and silage harvest can become dangerous.

Prevent a serious illness, injury, or delay that could result from skipping on safety by checking in with the harvest team this month.



  • Are equipment and machinery maintained and functioning properly? For example: tractor, baler, chopper, haybine, hay rake, semi or chopper box, unloaders.
  • Are guards, shields, and safety stickers in place and in good condition?
  • Is maintenance done only when equipment is powered down? Consider a lock-out-tag-out system.
  • Are equipment operators aware of any steep inclines, ravines, or obstacles in the field that are hazardous?
  • Are children kept away from this work site and off equipment?
  • Are workers wearing slim-fit clothes, no-slip work shoes, a safety vest, and cloth face masks? Even if a worker is alone when operating machinery, COVID-19 particles can linger in the cab.
  • Does roadway equipment have proper lighting and slow-moving signage?
  • Are you keeping three points of contact when climbing structures like silos?
  • Are workers using established hand signals?
  • Are you minimizing cross-team exposure by coordinating work schedules for individuals residing together?
  • Are high touch surfaces (vehicles, offices, break spaces, etc.) disinfected or sanitized with a focus on the vehicle?
  • Are harvest team members trained with safety instructions and emergency procedures? Are these procedures updated with COVID-19 in mind?
  • Is there an ABC Fire Extinguisher in all equipment?

You and/or your employee(s) can download and print a pdf checklist to complete safety checks on your farm.  Keep the completed forms for follow-up, future reference and inspections.



Additional Resources:

Disclaimer: The facts and information listed above are suggestions for your safety, but are in no way a comprehensive and exhaustive list of all actions needed to ensure your safety.